Police cross county lines to prevent traffic deaths

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June 8, 2007 News 12 @ 6 O'Clock

AIKEN COUNTY, SC --- The number of people killed on Aiken County roads is climbing; nineteen fatalities so far in 2007. That's six more than this time last year.
Tonight we tell you what local law enforcement agencies are doing to prevent more accidents.

"It may not look like it right now in Aiken County because of the traffic collisions and traffic deaths but it does help," says Officer Willie Mays of the Law Enforcement Agency.

As cars whiz by on one of North Augusta's fastest four lanes he reflects on his role in a unique city with woven highways.

"People just have in mind it's the interstate so 'we can go as fast as we want.' A lot of people have that mentality," Mays says.

Reports indicate speed is a contributing factor to several of the nineteen traffic fatalities in Aiken County this year. Many of the victims were killed on I-20, Highway 78, Highway 2 and on other back roads.

The body count concerns Lieutenant Tim Pearson.

"We want to do our part to make sure we still do our best to try and drive those numbers down," he says.

Pearson is the Regional Coordinator for L.E.N -- a state funded program that molds multiple jurisdictions. Aiken, Barnwell and Bamburg Counties work as one with a data-driven, focused effort.

"They're targeted towards those areas that we've seen fatalities and high injury type corridors," Pearson says.

Officer Mays likes the program and he believes it's effective.

"It really helps out. Law enforcement is just a big family anyway," he says.

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